Six Nations 2016: Manu Tuilagi can give England X-factor versus Wales

By Nick WebbBBC Sport Wales
Manu Tuilagi
Former England coach Stuart Lancaster opted to leave Manu Tuilagi out of his 2015 World Cup squad
Six Nations: England v Wales
Venue: Twickenham. Date: Saturday, 12 March. Kick-off: 16:00 GMT
Coverage: Live on ITV, commentary on BBC Radio 5 live & BBC Sport website and BBC Sport app, plus live text commentary.

Recalled centre Manu Tuilagi can give England the X-factor in Saturday's potential Six Nations title-decider against Wales, says Jonathan Davies.

Tuilagi is back in the England squad after a 15-month absence from international duty because of injuries and disciplinary issues.

"He's definitely an X-factor player; extremely strong, powerful, with great subtleties," said Wales centre Davies.

Owen Farrell has been Jonathan Joseph's partner in England's midfield.

But Tuilagi has been tipped for a return to the matchday squad although it is expected to be off Eddie Jones' replacement bench at Twickenham on Saturday.

"I'm sure they'd want to throw him in there, whether or not to start is down to them," said Davies.

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Tuilagi is viewed as an inside centre by new England coach Eddie Jones, and could come in direct opposition with Wales powerhouse Jamie Roberts.

"Hopefully I can get out of the way of that collision," joked Davies. "They're two great players, and if they do decide to play Tuilagi, it'll be a tough contest.

"He's shown in the past he has little subtleties, an offloading game - he is hard to bring down when he gets going and he creates space for other people."

Davies, who will re-join the Scarlets next season, emerged unscathed from his Top 14 appearance for Clermont against Grenoble last Friday.

He is looking forward to playing a more active role than in Wales' World Cup win at Twickenham in October, when he was a pundit for S4C.

"I was on the sidelines, it was almost like being a 'mad Taff' (supporter) with a daffodil on," he added.

Date (All times GMT)ProgrammeCoverage
Sat, 12 Mar (13:30 KO)Ireland v ItalyITV and BBC Radio
Sat, 12 Mar (16:00 KO)England v WalesITV and BBC Radio 5 live
Sun, 13 Mar, 14:00 (15:00 KO)Scotland v FranceBBC One and BBC Radio

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